The android market is not an easy one – its proliferation of devices and operating systems poses a number of key challenges for developers to overcome. But as the biggest mobile market the challenges must be faced head on – which is why the Droid World two day conference track at Apps World is always a big draw for visitors to the event.
At this October’s conference, held at Earls Court 2, October 22-23, there will be a number of high profile speakers sharing their expertise including industry giants such as Google and Twitter and market leading authors in the industry. Despite the scale of the market the challenges to Android developers are common to all:
Where next for wearable technology – Google Glass shares its vision
Wearable technology is stimulating much debate at the moment with markets ranging from patient care to fitness but it’s the launch of Google Glass that is proving the real talking point. Interest is likely to be high therefore in the keynote session on the new technology from Grant Allen, principal architect at Google who returns to the show in 2013 to talk about the opportunities the technology offers developers.
Delivering big ambitions
If there’s one person who knows how to deliver apps to scale it’s Twitter’s director of engineering Jeff Seibert whose presentation, on day 2 of the event, will focus on how to manage your development process for maximum efficiency as well as optimising and debugging your android apps. As yet another keynote session his talk is likely to prove popular with delegates.
Solving the challenges of a schizophrenic customer base for mobile
Android vs iOS has long been the big challenge for developers. With two very different customer bases developers must ensure they know the personality of the Android customer inside out. Yet it’s no easy challenge. Typically the iOS customer has been the more affluent, urban based professional – making an active choice to go with iOS because of the advantages it offers – such as first to market in most instances. But Android is catching up fast and whilst some users and understanding the personalities of both types of customers and the effect that has on their app buying and usage habits is therefore critical.
Fragmentation has long been an issue for the android market – not only given the proliferation of handsets in operation but also the variety of operating system in use too. It is one of the biggest challenges of developing apps for android and therefore managing the expectations of users is vital in this market.
Creating an app is one thing but if the app is too bulky or complicated then its use will be limited. Another high profile speaker at the event will be Mario Zechner, author of Beginning Android Games, who will be giving the best tips to develops on how to manage apps file size and efficiency including code shrinking and using benchmarks to maximise the performance. He will also be discussing the best tricks to create apps which optimise battery life.
Quality assurance and testing
With so many devices and systems in operation the QA and testing part of the app development process is vital but can also be one of the biggest headaches for developers. What works perfectly on one device can be bug-ridden on another but without extensive resources it can be almost impossible to test every single system. A panel session comprising representatives from the BBC, Sky and Apptivation, will aim to determine just how to ensure your app works on the devices you need it to for your own target user base.
Getting in a tangle over threading is a common problem in app development but one that Mark Murphy, author of The Busy Coder’s Guide to Android Development, will be aiming to overcome when he discusses the challenges of managing the thread lifecycle, the advantages and disadvantages of multi-threading, and the challenges of maintaining thread safety.
Finding your way with geo-location
Geo-location within apps offers exciting and increasing opportunities for developers – especially given the practical and monetisation benefits they can deliver. From location based offers in retail to keeping track of the vulnerable within care applications the functionality already offers huge benefits but Ian Holt, head of developer outreach at Ordnance Survey will explain how developers can further exploit the functionality offered by geo-location and how to it can help to extend and maintain customer bases and retention.
Droid World will be taking place at Earls Court 2 in London on the 22nd & 23rd October, 2013. To register for your free pass Droid World (as well as the Apps World exhibition, Enterprise World, Developer World, Tech World and Gaming World) please click here.